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‘He’s A Smashing Player’ – Bruce Thrilled With Contribution Of Player ‘We’ve Paid A Lot Of Money For’

Steve Bruce gave us a positive update on the return of Jonjo Shelvey and Miguel Almiron during his press conference this morning. From the sound of it, he seems reasonably confident that both will return tomorrow.

Here is some of what he said about the pair:

“They trained yesterday so speaking at the moment we haven’t seen them just yet [today], but they both seemed ok yesterday.

“I wouldn’t take the risk if I didn’t think they were right. I think the risk would have been last week. So I’ve let them recover. With a muscle you’re always on edge.

“We think they’ve done enough in the gym and rehabilitation work this week to make sure they are ok. The big risk would have been playing them last weekend.”

This is a promising sign that both should be ready to go on Saturday. While he started the press conference saying they were both in with a chance, his follow up comments seem to indicate that he expects them to be available.

Bruce was also asked about Miguel Almiron in relation to Jonjo Shelvey, who has found terrific form over the past month, especially in front of goal.

However, Bruce seems thrilled with Miguel’s contributions to the side. He even touched on how we missed his presence last week at Burnley.

This is some of what Bruce had to say about the 25-year-old:

“He’s a smashing player who we all enjoy playing in the team as long as he contributes.

“Look, we would love him to score more goals, of course, we would. But He works every day as if it is his last.

“He comes in. He’s a wonderful professional; he is a great lad, a good player, so I have got no problems with Almiron because of what he gives the team and the threat he causes a team.

“Now if he can add a few goals, great, but at the moment, I am very pleased with him. You always miss your good players, especially at the top end of the pitch.

“With him and Saint-Maximin missing, of course, we are going to be a bit hampered.

“We’ve paid a lot of money for the two of them, so that’s what we brought them here for, to give us that little bit of an edge.

“Last week, we certainly missed them. Sometimes you become a better player by not playing.”

That’s certainly a glowing appraisal of the Paraguayan. We really did miss Miguel last weekend as we had no one to run at Burnley like Almiron and Saint-Maximin do so well.

While he’s not scored yet, his work rate is immense, and he’s so willing to track back when out of possession.

He did get his first assist a few weeks ago against Manchester City when Jetro Willems scored his second goal for Newcastle.

We are reasonably confident that Miguel will be back tomorrow and hopefully that will make a big difference in our threat going forward.

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29 comments so far

  • Big Bruce Stars.

    Dec 20, 2019 at 2:45 PM

    Comment #1

    Munster – as you are doing random unprovoked jabs may I say in the spirit of the season, you will always be a turkey to me – may you remain well-roasted, and of course, get stuffed.

  • Unused Substitute

    Dec 20, 2019 at 2:47 PM

    Comment #2

    A school kid into football would think breaking down an organized defence just with speed a dribbling but without 1-2’s and accurate passing is not going to work. We hardly ever touch 80% pass accuracy. Even our long balls are wayward more often than not. Of course Bruce should know it better; he is getting paid for that.

  • Scythe For Bruce

    Dec 20, 2019 at 2:47 PM

    Comment #3

    Bowen may very well be friendly with Bruce, but the Hull owner most certainly isn’t. And considering he’s the one who ultimately decides who he does business with then I think that puts us at a major disadvantage compared to rival teams competing for Bowen’s signature.

    I’d absolutely love to see the lad playing for us though. I think he’s got what it takes to step up to the next level.

  • Unused Substitute

    Dec 20, 2019 at 2:50 PM

    Comment #4

    toon22 @5 (previous): you could add value to the discussion by pointing, for instance, to the profile of a replacement to Ashley you may have in your mind and we could exchange our notes.

  • Scythe For Bruce

    Dec 20, 2019 at 2:53 PM

    Comment #5

    Kets – while it’s not impossible for Arsenal to get relegated this season, it’s highly unlikely. If Arteta doesn’t work out then I think the owners would step in and get someone who’d give them a chance of survival.

    I have to say I’m very surprised they went with someone with no managerial experience whatsoever and not one of the more experienced managers who are currently available, such as Ancelotti. I know Arteta has been understudy to Pep for a while, but it’s one thing to be assisting someone and another to be the one pulling the strings yourself.

  • Unused Substitute

    Dec 20, 2019 at 2:53 PM

    Comment #6

    RE Bowen: it is naïve to suggest professional decisions would be guided by personal likes and dislikes.

  • Jib

    Dec 20, 2019 at 3:11 PM

    Comment #7

    Bowen is out of contract in June so Hull’s ownership will have no say

  • Scythe For Bruce

    Dec 20, 2019 at 3:24 PM

    Comment #8

    Jib – I think Hull have the option to extend his deal for another year.

  • The next Mike Williamson

    Dec 20, 2019 at 3:27 PM

    Comment #9

    i read on a previous article theyve got an option on another year for bowen.

  • Mindshaft

    Dec 20, 2019 at 3:27 PM

    Comment #10

    An option to extend requires Bowens agreement – he’ll be on his way for a nice signing on fee , if Leicester or spurs are in for him he would be crazy to come to toon the way we are playing at the moment.

  • Jib

    Dec 20, 2019 at 3:28 PM

    Comment #11

    The option is his
    So far he’s side-stepping

  • Scythe For Bruce

    Dec 20, 2019 at 3:28 PM

    Comment #12

    Unused – if Hull receive a bunch of offers (and they most likely will) then the Hull owner will be free to pick and choose. And we also know that owners (just like a few on here) can be quite petty and able to hold a grudge.

    So you may be right, he could just forget what went on between them, but he could also choose not to allow Bruce to sign him.

  • Scythe For Bruce

    Dec 20, 2019 at 3:28 PM

    Comment #13

    Re: contract extension – fair enough! 🙂

  • Jib

    Dec 20, 2019 at 3:33 PM

    Comment #14

    Some outlets are reporting that Hull have an option
    to extend , but all he has to do is make outrageous
    salary demands
    A contract extension tying
    him to his current £6K per week would be pretty much unenforceable

  • hibbit

    Dec 20, 2019 at 3:35 PM

    Comment #15

    owners will still be in control in January with a years option available to them, when substantial offers will be made to both the player and the club from far more ambitious clubs and owners.

  • Scythe For Bruce

    Dec 20, 2019 at 3:50 PM

    Comment #16

    For some reason I always thought it was the club’s choice to trigger an extension on the same wages and terms for a player with the player having no choice.

  • Munster Mag

    Dec 20, 2019 at 3:51 PM

    Comment #17

    Arrogant walking Sunderland advert who knows sod all but opines on everything. A pub bore. In Sunderland colours. Take a bow, Tarquin the Mackem.

  • Unused Substitute

    Dec 20, 2019 at 3:52 PM

    Comment #18

    Scythe @12: if Bowen runs down his contract, as seems likely, and gets offers from more competitive clubs, or from where he thinks he can develop, he may end up there. At the most, we may just offer him some game time. The choice seems to be pretty clear to me. Our chances of signing him this winter is technically even less likely.

  • ronaldo aarons

    Dec 20, 2019 at 3:54 PM

    Comment #20

    I’ve never known a player having any say on these sorts of contract extensions. Anytime I’ve heard about them with a player it has always been on the clubs decision to go ahead on the same terms the player is currently on.

    If Bowen has a say then I’d be surprised. Saying that, the Bowen ship has sailed and he’s got too many suitors interested in him. Our opportunity was the summer just gone where going by reports, we didn’t see value or thought he was worth the £20m odd price tag.

  • Big Bruce Stars.

    Dec 20, 2019 at 3:55 PM

    Comment #21

    Ketsy I know you are not given to hyperbole and outrageous suggestion of any kind but isn’t your prediction of Arsenal getting relegated mightily similar to your previous seasons proposed relegation of Manchester Unitedshiresville?


  • Scythe For Bruce

    Dec 20, 2019 at 3:57 PM

    Comment #22

    I’m totally aware of the circumstances surrounding a regular contract running down and the pros and cons for both the player and the club. But Bowen’s one year extension is what interested me and how that comes into play in terms of whether he actually did have the choice to reject that or if he was bound to it for another twelve months if the club chose to extend.

  • JohnReese

    Dec 20, 2019 at 3:57 PM

    Comment #23

    I actually think Arteta could be a smart appointment by Arsenal, assuming they give him the time to implement changes. I think at this point they’d have to just admit this season is pretty much a lost cause. Let him work out who of the first team he can work with long term and who is ready to step up from the youth sides.

    Obviously I’d rather see every other team in the league struggle but I do enjoy seeing younger managers coming through as it means less jobs for the old boys club.

  • Scythe For Bruce

    Dec 20, 2019 at 3:59 PM

    Comment #24

    Ronaldo – exactly. That’s how I always thought they worked. That article I linked to seems to suggest that is the case. Especially with Bowen being so young when he signed his current deal.

  • AncientC

    Dec 20, 2019 at 4:14 PM

    Comment #25

    I can see Bruce searching for a Huddlestone type midfielder in the upcoming window. It would be a blow for the Longstaffs—but competition cannot be a bad thing.

    Hayden really shouldn’t have any worries; he can play in a multitude of positions. Hayden is apparently even a good goalkeeper if push came to shove.

  • Jib

    Dec 20, 2019 at 4:19 PM

    Comment #26

    Hull City use the option system extensively
    They have never had one challenged
    Assem Allam has been warned by the PFA
    that some day there will be a reckoning.
    This could be the time
    Try and think of a club with a real workyticket
    of an owner that could challenge the Tigers

  • Lindisfarne

    Dec 20, 2019 at 5:16 PM

    Comment #27

    “But I like the cold, I like the cold,” Almirón interjects for the first and only time in English”


  • Ketsbaia9

    Dec 20, 2019 at 6:51 PM

    Comment #28

    Man Utd still aren’t safe yet. A defeat against us will put them back in the relegation mix.

  • Bills Son Is Back

    Dec 20, 2019 at 9:12 PM

    Comment #29

    Someone said earlier that the animosity between the Hull owners and Bruce won’t affect Bowen’s transfer…

    I’ll tell you a true story…

    When Mick McCarthy was a young up and coming centre half with Barnsley, Arthur Cox was desperate to sign him and McCarthy was dead keen to come.

    But, Barnsley’s manager at the time, ex Leeds wing half Norman Hunter told McCarthy the last team he would be transferred to was NUFC.


    Two reasons, Cox was Sunderland’s coach when they beat Leeds in the FA Cup final in 1973 and he took the P out of the Leeds players after the final whistle, that didn’t go down well.

    But worse, when Hunter got his first manager’s job as a rookie at Barnsley, Cox who was a wily manager at Chesterfield, stitched Hunter up by selling him a young hugely talented Scottish mid for £30,000 (a decent fee in those days) who owed big money to the heavy boys in Glasgow. Cox knew the lad was in big trouble and, just a few weeks after signing for Barnsley, the lad took flight and never returned to the club. Hunter found out Cox knew the craic and that cemented his hatred for him. I won’t mention the lad’s name, he never played pro football again and was tragically found dead in a hotel room before he was 30.

    McCarthy went to Man City and we signed Glen Roeder instead.

    I won’t say how I know this, but it is true.


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